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Making The Case: Business Models in Online Gaming Greg Costikyan Chief Design Officer, Unplugged Games [email protected] http://www.costik.com Jessica Mulligan [email protected] Who We Are Greg Costikyan Chief Design Officer, Unplugged Games MadMaze, Fantasy War, 25 others

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making the case business models in online gaming
Making The Case:Business Models in Online Gaming

Greg Costikyan

Chief Design Officer, Unplugged Games

[email protected]

http://www.costik.com

Jessica Mulligan

[email protected]

who we are
Who We Are

Greg Costikyan

Chief Design Officer, Unplugged Games

MadMaze, Fantasy War, 25 others

“The Future of Online Games

http://www.goodreports.com/r-olgame.html

Jessica Mulligan

Rim Worlds War

GEnie Game Manager

Engage

Origin

Consultant

the agenda
The Agenda
  • Today’s Markets: What are they and who are the customers for each?
  • Current Models
  • In-Test: Evolving Models
  • Likely Future Models
  • Rules of the Road
  • Q&A: 10 to15 minutes
today s market segments
Today’s Market Segments
  • Mass Market
    • 70% of all game players
  • Casual
    • 15-20% of the group
  • Hard Core
    • 10-15% of the group
current models
Current Models
  • Advertising/Sponsorship
    • Classic card (Spades, Poker) and board (Chess, Backgammon) games, trivia, “gameshow” games, often prize-driven. Players play for free, but view ads and/or sponsor notices.
  • Buy at Retail, Play Online for Free
    • Quake, Unreal, Starcraft, Diablo II.
  • Retail Purchase + Monthly sub
    • Buy the SKU, pay a monthly fee; e.g. Ultima Online, Everquest.
emerging models
Emerging Models
  • Episodic
    • Charge by episode or for the game engine.
  • Console
    • ISP; charge for add-ons and ancillary services.
  • Free client, monthly sub
models we know don t work
Models We Know Don’t Work
  • Licensing to ISPs
  • Ad-Supported Hard-Core Games
  • Virtual Collective Card-Game Model
  • Micropayments (but PayPal may change equation)
what s coming
What’s Coming?
  • Creative Divergence
    • The proper technology to appeal to the proper market and customer.
  • Owning The Customer
    • Large publishers and content owners should seek to control access to their subscriber base, not aggregators.
  • Reach Out and Touch Someone
    • Combining electronic entries into player’s daily lives to send and receive game content.
tomorrow s models
Tomorrow’s Models
  • Ad & Sponsorship:Shift from ‘click-throughs’ to ‘online branding’ make games more appealing (highly sticky).
  • Persistent Worlds Remain Big Revenue earners.
  • Capturing the Middle Ground:The big middle that will pay a little but not a lot.
  • Episodic Content
tomorrow s models ii
Tomorrow’s Models II
  • Consoles: ISP + pay for components
  • Multiple platforms & revenue streams
rules of the road
Rules of the Road
  • This is not TV. Understand the difference between participation and observation.
  • Customer service rules.
  • Understand that only about 5% of the world population is currently connected. Those who prepare now will reap the riches five, ten and twenty years from now.
some definitions
Some Definitions
  • Casual Gamer: Enjoys computer and video games, buys maybe 4 to 6 a year, enjoys competition against other human players, may have tried one or two persistent worlds. Prime candidate to move into the Hard Core ranks.
  • Mass Market: Enjoys well-known and easy to play games such as card games, Trivia and board games. Use these as a short social event. Least likely to spend money on a subscription or for-pay basis.
  • Online Game: Any game that allows two or more players to interact via the Internet, Web or online service.
  • Persistent World: Also referred to as ‘massively multiplayer online games’ or MMOGs. Major features include persistent terrain, objects and non-player characters, player characters/avatars that grow in power, possessions and/or game score and a continually growing and evolving backstory.
  • Retail Hybrid: A home-play SKU that includes Internet connectivity for 2 to 64 players per online session. Online sessions are short in duration, generally less than one hour and often 15 to 20 minutes. Generally features no persistence. Examples include Diablo II, Unreal Tournament and Quake III.
slide14
Presentation may be downloaded from:

www.costik.com/pres/iirLondon/

Questions & Queries to:

Jessica Mulligan

[email protected]

Greg Costikyan

[email protected]

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